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Message from the Country Manager 2020

Spring Edition


Seeing out 2020 in true kiwi style! A cold beverage and some good tucker.

I wrote in my previous message that we would get through the remainder of 2020 with the kiwi attitude of "she’ll be right" - backed up with some strong business planning and I wasn't far from the truth. We persevered with plans and managed to bring our family business community together twice before wrapping up for the year.


While many membership associations ground to a halt due to the coronavirus outbreak, FBNZ continued to run full steam ahead - creating a range of new initiatives and resources backed by our Australian counterparts to support our members during this pandemic. 

Like the family business community FBNZ, had to adjust our business model to ensure continuity of operations and to change our product offerings in order to add value to your membership - we did this through our strong and reliable online presence.


As restrictions eased in early October we were hot off the press to bring our community back together face to face at our Family Business Reunion Event hosted by Karen Fistonich and her team at Villa Maria - the conversation flowed nearly as much as the wine and the insights that were shared by Karen of her family business triumphs and tribulations were invaluable. 

In November we were hosted by long standing supporters Cone Marshall, spearheaded by Partner, Claudia Shan and accompanied by Ziyad Matti and the extended Cone Marshall team. We had the opportunity to view their new office space, hear the Cone Marshall story and sampled some of St Pierre's sushi (an insight into what you will experience at our next networking event in February 2021).

FBNZ has a full agenda for the first 6 months and I encourage you to participate where you can. Click here to download our upcoming events calendar. As we move into a New Year, we will be scheduling more in-person events and will also be expanding into the South Island - watch this space!

We gratefully welcomed new National Gold Sponsor, EWM Group led by Brad Scott with him and his team offering education opportunities to the FBNZ membership next year. We also look forward to welcoming Grant Thornton New Zealand to our partnerships portfolio in early 2021.

I would like to personally thank Greg Griffith, FBNZ CEO and the extended FBNZ team who support the New Zealand operations from our Australian office in Melbourne - their contributions have allowed FBNZ to thrive during this tough year.


I would also like to make special mention of FBNZ Chairman, Iain Blakeley who volunteers his time to support FBNZ in building our brand awareness and membership. Your professionalism, genuine caring manner and your knowledge of the family business sector is invaluable to FBNZ and I am grateful to work alongside you.

I would like to finish up 2020 by thanking you all for your support during this unprecedented year - without you we simply wouldn't exist. I have enjoyed the many conversations with you all and watching our network grow and each of you foster strong relationships with each other.


I look forward to seeing you on the 16th February 2021 at our next networking event hosted by the Katsoulis brothers at St Pierre's Sushi in Panmure, Auckland - don't miss out! More information can be found here.


Wishing you a safe and happy festive season.

Many thanks,

Nicole Oswell

Country Manager, Family Business New Zealand

Nicole Oswell - e-signature.jpg
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